OXFORD, Norwich and Southend-on-Sea are backing a new enquiry into cultural resources for cites.

Arts Council England is joining forces with the ‘East of England’ key cities to help conduct the research.

In September 2018 the enquiry will produce a report providing practical recommendations to policy-makers, funders, and deliverers of culture to address challenges facing cities as local authority funding is cut.

Virgin Money CEO Jayne-Anne Gadhia is chairing the enquiry.

She said: “ I firmly believe that culture can and should be a force for social and economic good, bringing together communities and driving investment to foster growth.

“I hope that through this enquiry, we will be able to provide creative and practical recommendations to really improve the ability of our cities to invest in culture, for the benefit of all.”

Sir Nicholas Serota, chairman of Arts Council England, said it was important to ‘secure the creative strengths of our great cities by finding fresh ways of doing things’.

He added: “The Cultural Cities Enquiry will look at

the current challenges and will seek to provide answers. The pressures on our cities may be great, but the prize is cities that are rewarding places to live in.”

Evidence is being gathered at six roundtable events in cities across the UK. The enquiry will focus on how cities and cultural organisations can make better use of ‘innovative’ financing.